Friday, April 27, 2012


So anxious are certain Italian politicians to rid themselves of what they regard as the "burden" of the South that one of their number, Mario Borghezio of the Lega Nord,  has suggested that Sicily and Campania be sold to the USA.  The idea that Sicily might become a US state dates back at least to the end of World War 11 and the era of Salvatore Giuliano so its resurgence in another unsettled period is hardly a surprise.  But let's take a light-hearted look at what the idea could mean in practice:

As far as I know, no one, this time round, has asked the Americans if they want to buy but their arrival might speed up transactions at the post office.  On second thoughts, the narrow street that is home to the Modica Sorda post office is far too narrow for all the indigenous cars whose drivers insist on entering it so I can't quite see Cadillacs managing the parking. Most of Modica's streets would have to be widened, in fact, and I think the Modicani would be accommodating about this, understanding as they do the necessity of driving wherever they want to go.

The only time when it is permitted not to drive is during the passeggiata, which takes place after work but before dinner on weekdays and any time after siesta until dinner time on Sundays.  This is when men and women parade in their finery along a set route and when you reach the end of the street or promenade you turn around and walk its whole length again.  It is also where boy meets girl, man courts woman, local gossip is exchanged and fashion trends are set.  It is essential, ladies, to throw on as much bling as possible and the men will blend in once they get used to wearing trainers with suits.  [The trainers, by the way, must be by Gucci.]

But we are jumping ahead, for our happy band of American administrators will need to take a siesta after all that driving and competing for parking spaces, followed by lunch. When they wake up, it will not be time for dinner, as at home, but to head back to the office for a few hours.  Then, having fulfilled their passeggiata duties and survived until the earliest possible hour at which a Sicilian might consider dining - at around 8.30 pm - they may be relieved to know that Sicily does have its own fast food in the form of focacce and arancini.  [Modica even saw off a McDonald's a few years ago so it is better not to mention Big Macs here.]

Pizza, though, is definitely not fast food and should you decide to go out for one you will have to show pazienza while it is cooked in a traditional, stone oven.  It will occur to no one to offer you an aperitvo during this considerable wait so you will have to do what the locals do and order a plate of chips to fill both the time and your stomach.  You are expected to consume one whole pizza each, not between you but don't worry because when it comes it will be so delicious that you will have no difficulty.

Afterwards you will take another passeggiata as you move on to a bar known for its pastries and you might even get to bed at around 1 am or later on Saturdays.  Oh yes, the pace of life might be slower but believe me, you will need all your energy!

Talking of the pace of life, the pace of Italian bureaucracy, as everybody knows, is even slower. No sale has been agreed and I think that, in Sicily, we 'll be happily staying exactly as we are.


Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Apologies to Matteo and Anne, whose comments I deleted by mistake earlier. This is a copy of them:

matteo has left a new comment on your post "TREAT OF THE WEEK":

I like your site-I was born in Sicily-but moved to Canada at 5 years old-I am now a 50 year old bachelor-and life here is boring-Plan to move there next month-There's an old house that my Grandfather left my Dad who passed 7 years ago-I am sure it is rundown-but I like camping so it might do-I am nervous about the move-but I get strength through your blog-I will be near Milazzo if anyone needs room and board for help with the house-Thanks Matt

annechung has left a new comment on your post "SICILY, USA?":

I'll pay the taxes to help buy Sicily, it'll add on to the states we already have. We'll have representatives from Sicily. It'll be great, it'll be a win win situation all around. Fly the stars and stripes flag in Sicily soon.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Thank you for your kind words about my blog, Matteo. I'm sure everything will be fine and you'll enjoy your new life!

Hi, Anne. Interesting to know what you think.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

I can't imagine Sciliy wanting to be part of the US, but I's sure many Americans would love to be able to easily visit your beautiful island and eat all the delicious food there :)

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Pat. and very welcome they will be.


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